Olympics is a win, says Los Angeles mayor
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[May 11, 2017]
By Steve Keating
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Los Angeles
Olympic bid officials appeared to soften their hardline stance,
backing away on Wednesday from a non-negotiable 2024 Summer Games or
As the International Olympic Committee's Evaluation Commission began
a three-day visit to the City of Angels an air of uncertainty was
hanging over the bidding process with the IOC considering a proposal
that would see the 2024 and 2028 Games awarded on Sept. 13 during a
congress in Lima, Peru.
Ever since the idea of a joint awarding both Los Angeles and rival
Paris, the only other city still in the running, had maintained they
were not interested in a 2028 consolation prize.
Recently Los Angeles has praised the merits of the joint award
proposal and mayor Eric Garcetti told Reuters on Wednesday getting
any Olympics should be considered a victory.
"An Olympic win is an Olympic win," said Garcetti.
Garcetti's comment comes six days after LA2024 bid chief Casey
Wasserman told reporters in London that an unprecedented joint
awarding of back-to-back Summer Games would be "the right idea" for
the Olympic movement.
Wasserman was again applauding the IOC's thinking on Wednesday but
without conceding anything to Paris.
"There has obviously be a lot of discussion recently about this
2024-28 question and frankly I applaud the IOC's thinking, it's the
right thinking at the right time," Wasserman told reporters.
"But this week is our opportunity to focus on core question, the
question we set out to answer in September 2015 -- why is LA2024 the
right city at this important time for the Olympic movement?
"Today was the first part of our answer.
"We have the strongest foundations of any Olympic bid in history."
At a time when cities are no longer lining up to bid for Olympic
Games because of skyrocketing costs, Los Angeles says it's offering
a cost-conscious, low-risk plans that relies on existing world-class
sporting venues like the Memorial Coliseum that was the center piece
of the 1932 Olympics and used again for the 1984 Summer Games.
[to top of second column]
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti laughs with LA 2024 Chairman Casey
Wasserman as he speaks during a news conference following a day of
meetings with members of the International Olympic Committee
Evaluation Commission for the Summer 2024 Olympic Games in Los
Angeles, California, May 10, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake
The Evaluation Commission, headed up by Swiss Patrick Baumann,
distanced itself from the debate, pointing out its job was to grade
the 2024 bids and nothing more.
"This Evaluation Commission is for 2024" said Baumann. "Now of
course there discussions going on for (20)24-28 at the executive
board of the IOC.
"Also having two great cities bidding for 2024 we can see if this
creates opportunities and what those opportunities are."
The working group is due to report to the IOC at its executive board
meeting in Lausanne in July.
(Additional reporting by Rory Carroll. Editing by Amlan Chakraborty)
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